Egypt's investment minister promises legal reforms to support investors

Nevine Kamel , Tuesday 28 Mar 2017

International Cooperation Minister Sahar Nasr
International Cooperation Minister Sahar Nasr

Egyptian Minister of Investment and International Cooperation Sahar Nasr promised at a meeting by the American Chamber of Commerce in Egypt on Tuesday legal reforms that would support investors and minimise obstacles they currently face.

Nasr said that new legislation should include incentives for investors in certain fields, particularly those that create more job opportunities, increase exports or offer products that Egypt currently imports.

During the Tuesday meeting, president of the American Chamber of Commerce in Egypt Anis Aclimandos expressed optimism over increasing US investments to Egypt.

Aclimandos said that the planned visit by Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi to the US in April to meet US President Donald Trump will improve relations between the two countries, especially in the political and economic fields.

According to Aclimandos, El-Sisi will be accompanied by representatives from the American Chamber of Commerce in Egypt and the US-Egypt Business Council. The representatives will be meeting with US businessmen to explain Egypt’s economic reform plans.

Trade between the two countries has exceeded $5.5 billion and involves 1,000 American companies investing in Egypt, Aclimandos added, highlighting what he described as “strong relations” between the two countries.

Head of the Egyptian American Council Omar Mehanna said that the visit will be “different” from previous visits, since it comes amid improved relations with the US under the Trump presidency.

Egypt had strained relations with former US President Barack Obama's administration, which had temporarily suspended military aid after the ouster of former president Mohamed Morsi  in 2013.

Following Trump’s electoral win, the White House said that Trump’s administration is committed to maintaining the US's annual military aid to Egypt. Trump also commended El-Sisi on the country's economic reform programme.

Egypt’s economic reform plan includes cutting state subsidies and increasing taxes. Egypt’s Central Bank also freely floated the pound last November as part of the reform plan.   

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